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10 Surprising Benefits of Yogurt You’d Want To Know

10 Surprising Benefits of Yogurt You’d Want To Know

I am sure you know all about the fact that yogurt is great for digestion. Who hasn’t seen those commercials featuring Jamie Lee Curtis lounging on a couch, chatting with her “friends” and eating a cup of yogurt? There are, however, some benefits of yogurt you may not know quite yet.

1. Makes your teeth pretty.

I know I am not alone in drinking copious amounts of coffee each day. While this habit keeps me awake, it does terrible things for my teeth. It seems that yogurt, although containing sugar, has no harmful effect on enamel. The lactic acid is thought to even have a positive effect in protecting gums and teeth from future damage.

2. Decreases allergy symptoms.

It can be challenging to do anything outdoors for those of us with seasonal allergies, so you might consider eating a cup of yogurt. The probiotics in yogurt may decrease your body’s reaction to pollen and other allergens.

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3. Yogurt serves as a great pre or post workout snack.

The carbohydrates in yogurt can either help to fuel you through your workout or replace energy that is lost. The potassium and sodium can also help to replace those electrolytes you sweat out.

4. May prevent the common cold.

Sure, the common cold will always be there, but you could help to prevent it. One of the many benefits of yogurt is that it has immune boosting effects. Yogurt has been shown to make your T-cells, or cells that fight infection, stronger and more active.

5. Helps prevent yeast infections.

Ladies, you might want to consider yogurt the next time you are given a prescription for antibiotics (using antibiotics usually raises the chances of yeast infections). Yogurt’s active cultures can help balance pH levels and prevent the painfully uncomfortable yeast infection from starting.

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6. May reduce the risk of high blood pressure.

A recent study was conducted over the course of 15 years with over 2000 participants. The study showed that 30% of volunteers who had at least 2% or more of their calories from yogurt were less likely to develop high blood pressure.

7. Helps to prevent osteoporosis.

Dairy in general is a great resource for building up healthy bones as it contains calcium. Look for yogurts with added vitamin D for a better bang for your buck.

8. Gives you a boost of energy.

Aside from the energy provided by the carbohydrates, yogurt contains B vitamins which work great if you need a little pick-me-up.

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9. Helps you build muscle.

Yogurt is a complete protein which means that it contains all of the essential amino acids necessary to build muscle and other tissues in the body.

10. Yogurt can help you lose weight.

I list this as the last item, but to many this may be the most important. Yogurt helps build muscle (as stated in the last point), which helps burn fat. It is also, as I stated before, a great source of energy to fuel workouts you may be performing to lose weight. Lastly, yogurt contains a fair amount of protein that helps you stay fuller longer.

 

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What should you look for when buying yogurt?

Make sure you keep these things in mind to obtain all of the benefits of yogurt:

  • Greek yogurt is preferred as it is generally higher in protein and lower in sugar.
  • Choose yogurt with live or active cultures if you want to see any of the digestive or immune boosting benefits of yogurt. The live or active cultures are what improve the good bacteria in your gut.
  • Keep an eye on the sugar content. Sugar is found naturally in dairy and fruit (if you are selecting a yogurt with fruit), but added sugars (including artificial sweeteners) do not need to be a part of your yogurt. According to Dr. Oz, for flavor and good sugar content, stick between 12-18 grams of sugar per serving.

 

So what are you waiting for? Grab a cup of the good stuff today!

Featured photo credit: Amanda at Diary of a Semi-Health Nut via semihealthyblog.com

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Amanda DeWitt

Writer. Photographer. Instagrammer. Future Educator.

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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